From over a century of obscurity, Wichita’s very first amusement park comes back into the spotlight in a mini-documentary by filmmaker Sara J. Harmon.

Wonderland Park was located on Ackerman Island, a sandbar in the middle of the Arkansas River, from 1906 to 1918. It headlined in the newspapers as “Wichita’s Coney Island” to compare its grandeur to New York City’s amusement park scene.

Harmon became intrigued with Wonderland Park when a co-worker mentioned it to her. “I thought she was joking!” says Harmon, “but, when she showed me photos on Google, I was instantly intrigued.”

Harmon’s mini-documentary “For Your Amusement: The Wonderland Park on Ackerman Island” will screen in Ackerman’s Backyard during Riverfest on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday evening from 7:30 -8 p.m. Additional screening are scheduled June 1, 1 p.m. at the Wichita Advanced Public Library and at Senior Wednesday, June 26, 1:30 p.m. at Exploration Place.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.